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Center for Sustainability

Center for Sustainability


While Denver and Colorado are included in the most carbon intensive electricity grid in the nation, Xcel Energy has made great strides in moving towards 30% renewables in their portfolio. This purchased electricity consistently contributes over 50% of the University of Denver's carbon footprint.

DU has an aggressive energy efficiency program through facilities management. Starting with an energy revolving fund founded in 2008 74 projects have been completed, focused on a range of lighting, controls, and mechanical projects. These projects have led to an estimated savings of over 7,000,000 KWH, and $675,000 annually, averaging a 2.28 year return on investment (through 2015 fiscal year). Projects have included conversions to LED lighting in buildings and parking garages, motion and daylight sensing controls, and many more. Projects are continually under review to identify additional ways of conserving energy. Examples of past projects can also be found on the Center for Sustainability campus map.

What can you do? 

Behavioral change can further enhance the physical improvements. There are many things you can do to help us reach our energy consumption reduction goals. Examples include:

  • Setting your thermostat at no higher than 70 degrees during the heating season, and no lower than 72 degrees during the cooling season
  • Keeping your windows closed when the heating or cooling is operating in the building
  • Turning off lights and electrical equipment (including computers) when not in use and at the end of the day.

For more examples see the facilities energy website. Center for Sustainability programming such as the Green Office and Green Residence Hall Certification, and the Residence Hall Energy Challenge encourage the DU community to do the little things that contribute to greater savings.